Dating disston saws

Note the Disston catalog image above says, “Do not attempt to set teeth.” The “Special High Temper” of the plate makes it harder and/or more brittle than a regular saw, which would cause the teeth to break if setting was attempted.

Sharpening The first decision in sharpening the saw was to determine how it should be sharpened.

The vast majority of these saws were made for woodworking, but Disston also made saws for cutting metal.

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Since these saws are uncommon and there is very little information on them, I thought it might be helpful to others to capture my experiences in this article.

The Saw The saw that was sent to me was a 26” Disston & Sons saw with 4” of plate under the spine (Figure 2).

A wood-cutting miter saw is typically filed as a crosscut saw at 11 points per inch.

Nearly all cuts in wood on a miter box are crosscuts, and the crosscut filing produces knife-edged teeth that sever the wood fibers that compose the grain of wood. Knife edges would not hold up well when cutting metal; chisel-shaped teeth, as found on a rip saw, would be more effective.

The Disstonian Institute: Online Reference of Disston Saws. Everything Saws, from Air Saws to Zero Clearance contains many links to sites both about Disston or selling their saws.

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The Henry Disston family enterprise: Part one of a three-part article.

Rose Antique biography on Disston - Everything Saws, from Air Saws to Zero Clearance contains many links to sites both about Disston or selling their saws.

I spent a good portion of my afternoon searching the net and came up nothing. I would like to learn how but I will have little free time in the next few months.


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